11 common lens errors and how you can avoid them

11 common lens errors and how you can avoid them

Common Lens Error No. 6: Can’t focus close enough

A Layman's Guide to Close-up Lenses

One thing you may notice when stepping up from a compact camera to a model that takes interchangeable lenses is that you can’t focus as closely as you are used to.

The best way to get really close so that subjects are the same size on the sensor as they are in real life is to use a macro lens.

These can be pretty expensive, but close-up lenses that look like filters and screw into the thread on the end of your lens can help you get very similar results at a fraction of the cost.

Extension tubes, which fit between the camera and the lens, are another relatively affordable option that enable you to turn a standard lens into a macro optic.

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Common Lens Error No. 7: Exposure changes when zooming

Control depth of field to isolate subjects

Unless you have an expensive, high-quality zoom lens with a constant maximum aperture, you need to watch out for the exposure changing when zooming from one end of the lens to the other.

The average kit lens, for example, has a maximum aperture of f/3.5 at the wideangle end and f/5.6 at the telephoto end.

This means that if you are shooting with the aperture wide open at the shortest focal length and you zoom into the longest point the aperture will change.

If you’re shooting in aperture priority or one of automatic modes the shutter speed will change automatically, so the brightness of the shot won’t change but you need to beware of the shutter speed falling below a safe hand-holdable speed.

If you’re shooting in manual exposure mode the image will get darker when you zoom in to a longer focal length if you don’t adjust the shutter speed to compensate.

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